I bought the previous version of this book more than 8 years ago. I was 21, and although I would've been ashamed to have admitted it then, I hadn't read a single book cover to cover in my 21 years, including school assignments. I had really struggled in school through my entire childhood and teenage years, and nobody really understood why. I failed every English class in high school. I just wasn't able to read, and it was immensely frustrating. I tested very well, and was clearly intelligent. I got deeply involved in computer programming from a very early age, so my intelligence level was high enough. I could write in English just fine. Yet I still struggled. Nobody ever diagnosed me with dyslexia, but this book looked interesting, so I bought it on a whim.
By the time I bought this book, I was doing well working in the computer industry, but I never really understood why I couldn't read. Well, to be clear, I could *read* and understand words; I wasn't illiterate by any means, but I found it impossible to get through more than a few pages of text. I had severe reading comprehension problems. My mind would read ahead, wander around, and mis-read things, and I would have to read and re-read the same text many times to really understand it (if I cared enough to learn it, as I did for computer programming).
I read this book (slowly and painfully at first, as always), and had a bit of an epiphany. I have applied Mr. Davis's techniques using the "mind's eye", and in the past 8 years I have read literally hundreds of books cover to cover. I now love reading, and pick up a new book at least once a week.
I still find myself struggling with my dyslexia if I am too tired, but that's the only time his techniques are not completely automatic. After years of practice, it's entirely automatic. I also (when possible) carefully choose printed books based on their typesetting (and choose the font on my computer carefully), which helps immensely as well -- I never knew that fonts and spacing could make such a difference before reading this book.
Mr. Davis's explanations of the differences in the workings of the mind -- the way that dyslexics can comprehend three dimensional objects in a different way than non-dyslexics -- made so much sense to me. I've always had a very high aptitude for science, mechanics, and complex systems. I've had the ability to visualize all sides of three dimensional objects, with no effort, and I've always thought this was perfectly normal. Of course I wouldn't trade that ability, that aptitude, for normal reading. Just thinking of dyslexia as a different way of visualizing rather than a disorder is a huge leap in dealing with it.
I know there are a number of negative reviews of this book, claiming that it's pseudoscience, there's no research, or that the techniques seem "silly". Personally, I don't care. The ability to read, to really read and comprehend (and quickly, at that!), has made such an enormous difference in my life that I recommend this book to everyone who will listen. If I had read this book when I was 10 years old rather than 21, I can't imagine how much it would've changed my early years.
Please, if you have a child who is struggling through school but you know to be super smart, read this book and *try it*.
Very gratefully indebted to Dr. Davis,